Irish Water considering 'hosepipe ban' as heatwave continues

The restriction would cover the use of hoses to fill paddling pools, wash cars or water gardens

Irish Water considering 'hosepipe ban' as heatwave continues

Picture by: Gareth Fuller/PA Archive/PA Images

It could soon be illegal to fill a paddling pool or water your garden during the heatwave.

Irish Water says it is consulting with its legal team to impose a so-called ‘hosepipe ban’.

The enforcement could come into effect in seven days, and people breaching the restriction could face a fine of €125.

However, the water utility says the major benefit would be in helping essential water conservation efforts.

Kate Gannon from Irish Water explained: "It's a legal process - we would also need to consider customer contacts, letters and messages, and also authorised individuals on the ground.

"Irish Water could exercise its powers under the existing legislation to introduce measures to really just ask people to stop doing certain non-essential activities."

The ban could cover hosepipe use for reasons such as watering residential gardens, cleaning cars, filling fountains or 'domestic recreational use'.

"Really it's just non-essential use of water in a time of great need - the order would cover that," Ms Gannon noted.

Throughout the week, Irish Water has been urging people to conserve water, and has placed restrictions in several areas of the country - including lowering night time water pressure levels in the Dublin area.

Usage dropped in the Dublin area overnight from 615 megalitres to 607 megalitres a day - but Irish Water warns that's still "far too high".

100 water supply schemes around the country are at risk as the hot and dry weather continues.

Restrictions could continue into the 'long term' if dry conditions continue into the autumn, and rainfall levels remain lower than normal.

A high temperature weather warning for the country has been extended until Saturday evening.

Yesterday, a temperature of 32 degrees was recorded at Shannon Airport - the highest recorded temperature in Ireland in more than years.

The Department of Agriculture, meanwhile, has extended its status red warning for forest fires until at least midday on Monday.